Saturday, October 26, 2013

How DOES God Win?

I Samuel 17:47 says, "...and that all this assembly may know that the LORD saves not with sword and spear. For the battle is the LORD’s, and he will give you into our hand.”

Sooo...what does this verse mean? If you are a Christian what have you been taught that this verse means?

I was taught that this verse in part explained the saying, "The LORD works in mysterious ways." In other words, whatever the will of God is when it comes to winning and losing the fact remains that the LORD always wins. The paradox is that sometimes it is difficult to see the victory that already exists, or, even more difficult to refrain from labeling the loss of a situation as an indicator of God failing to win.

What the LORD/God calls a win is not always evident to man. It is a mystery to us why God has already won every battle and defeated Satan, it is a mystery to us why bad things happen to good people, it is a mystery to us how God always wins yet never so much as lifts a sword or tosses a spear.

Sooo...the LORD never raises a sword or a spear...and still wins? Let's take a peek into the Bible and find out how it is possible for God to always win.

Genesis 11:6-9
"Look!" he said. "The people are united, and they all speak the same language. After this, nothing they set out to do will be impossible for them!

Come, let us go down and there confuse their language, so that they may not understand one another’s speech.”

So the LORD dispersed them from there over the face of all the earth, and they left off building the city.

Therefore its name was called Babel, because there the LORD confused the language of all the earth. And from there the LORD dispersed them over the face of all the earth.

Not all situations of winning and losing have to do with war. Sometimes it is just a matter of whether or not God is going to allow people to go about their lives peaceably. When God leaves people alone...great. Everyone wins. When God decides to stick His nose where it does not loses every time.

And what about the above verses? Where is the winning and losing? The losing is where God purposely throws the people into confusion, causing the people to disperse/disband. Man is the loser here, which by default makes God the winner. we have established that God has used CONFUSION to win.

Exodus 4:21
21 And the LORD told Moses, "When you arrive back in Egypt, go to Pharaoh and perform all the miracles I have empowered you to do. But I will harden his heart so he will refuse to let the people go.

This here is a very interesting, very telling verse when it comes to understanding how God tricks people into thinking they have any real power to begin with. God tells Moses to go and show Pharaoh all of these great wonders, actions that are supposed to convince Pharaoh to let the people of Israel go, right? Wrong. God has given all of these powers to Moses and they mean absolutely squat because God has purposely hardened Pharaoh's heart. Sooo, here we have established that God wins by interfering with a person's free will.

Exodus 7:3-4
But I will harden Pharaoh's heart that I may multiply My signs and My wonders in the land of Egypt.

Even then Pharaoh will refuse to listen to you. So I will bring down my fist on Egypt. Then I will rescue my forces--my people, the Israelites--from the land of Egypt with great acts of judgment.

Oh, look! Three cheers for God being consistent in continuing to harden Pharaoh's heart. in this case we see that God still presses for a win by interfering with or removing a person's free will altogether.

Exodus 7:13-14
13 Still Pharaoh’s heart was hardened, and he would not listen to them, as the LORD had said.

14 Then the LORD said to Moses, “Pharaoh’s heart is hardened; he refuses to let the people go.
Please. As if God didn't know what the hell was going on. Here, God gets demerits for playing dumb, but does get kudos for His enduring consistency to win by hijacking man's free will.

Exodus 8:19
19 Then the magicians said to Pharaoh, “This is the finger of God.” But Pharaoh’s heart was hardened, and he would not listen to them, as the LORD had said. we have a slightly different version of God taking someone's free will hostage, right? How so? Read the verse. It says Pharaoh would not listen due to the hardening of his heart deafening his ears to what people around him were saying. The choice to listen to any one message or person is a power that must remain with the individual. That does not happen here.

Exodus 8:29
29 Moses answered, "As soon as I leave you, I will pray to the LORD, and tomorrow the swarms of flies will disappear from you and your officials and all your people. But I am warning you, Pharaoh, don't lie to us again and refuse to let the people go to sacrifice to the LORD."

Don't lie to us again? Pharaoh ISN'T lying because Pharaoh ISN'T making the choice to refuse to let the people go. God is doing that. Does Moses suffer from some kind of memory disorder? Does he not recall God informing him that God was going to harden Pharaoh's heart? Moses knows damn well what God is doing. It is Pharaoh who is the clueless one in this situation and that isn't even by his own choice but by God's bullshit fighting tactics. we have an interesting element added to God's bag of winning tricks: make the person you are against look like a liar when they are really not a liar. Pharaoh is not the one lying here. This little twisted game of pretend makes both God and Moses liars.

Exodus 10:1
Then the LORD said to Moses, "Return to Pharaoh and make your demands again. I have made him and his officials stubborn so I can display my miraculous signs among them.

Wow. God is going to include Pharaoh's officials in His twisted game of 'Let's Steal Someone's Free Will'. Why does God do this? Was robbing Pharaoh of HIS choice not enough? Is it because the officials are starting to realize something is wrong with Pharaoh and he would normally never react in this manner? Here we have God winning not just by taking the power of choice from one person...but from many. God obviously give a shit about the needs of the many or the needs of the few. His concern is the needs of the One.

Exodus 10:20
20 But the LORD hardened Pharaoh’s heart, and he did not let the people of Israel go. many times is God going to use this one tactic?

Exodus 10:27
27 But the LORD hardened Pharaoh’s heart, and he would not let them go.

Apparently lots and lots of times, right?

Exodus 11:10
10 Moses and Aaron did all these wonders before Pharaoh, and the LORD hardened Pharaoh’s heart, and he did not let the people of Israel go out of his land.

Do you think God would use this tactic against you...maybe to teach you some fantastic lesson or two?

Exodus 12:36
36 And the LORD had given the people favor in the sight of the Egyptians, so that they let them have what they asked. Thus they plundered the Egyptians.

Holy shit! Now God has gone far beyond just bamboozling Pharaoh and his advisors. Here God robs an entire people of their minds/their power of choice. And WHY does He do this? So that on the way out of Egypt the people of God can rob the Egyptians of their valuables. How is THAT for a divine tactic to win?

Exodus 14:17
17 And I will harden the hearts of the Egyptians so that they shall go in after them, and I will get glory over Pharaoh and all his host, his chariots, and his horsemen. it is NOT enough that God has used terrible tactics to win and get His people out of Egypt, to rob the Egyptians, and to leave in victory. No, this is not enough of a win. God wants a GREATER win so more people will be strangled by fear and choose to believe in Him. Sooo...what does God do? Again, God wins by taking a person's power to choose. The Pharaoh and his army have no choice but to follow the people of God. Lovely.

Exodus 14:24-25
24 And in the morning watch the LORD in the pillar of fire and of cloud looked down on the Egyptian forces and threw the Egyptian forces into a panic,

That's right...God DID take your freedom of choice, but He does have a nice parting gift for you as He decimates you in a great victory:PANIC. God loves using panic and does it quite often in the Old Testament.

25 clogging their chariot wheels so that they drove heavily. And the Egyptians said, “Let us flee from before Israel, for the LORD fights for them against the Egyptians.”

If only the Egyptians knew that the LORD fights for no one other than Himself.

Numbers 11:1
Soon the people began to complain about their hardship, and the LORD heard everything they said. Then the LORD's anger blazed against them, and he sent a fire to rage among them, and he destroyed some of the people in the outskirts of the camp.

Sooo...the people are upset and have complaints. Instead of talking with the people and fixing things, God wins the argument by BURNING some of the people to death.

Numbers 21:3
And the LORD heeded the voice of Israel and gave over the Canaanites, and they devoted them and their cities to destruction. So the name of the place was called Hormah.

See, when God's people win it isn't because God is so great and mighty and full of love and peace. No. They are not victorious in the true sense of victory where justice and truth win. Here the victory comes because God made it impossible for them to lose by simply giving the Canaanites over. Nice. 

Numbers 21:34-35
34 But the LORD said to Moses, “Do not fear him, for I have given him into your hand, and all his people, and his land. And you shall do to him as you did to Sihon king of the Amorites, who lived at Heshbon.”

Is it just me or does it seem like God loves to simply hand people over to great destruction?

Deuteronomy 7:2
When the LORD your God hands these nations over to you and you conquer them, you must completely destroy them. Make no treaties with them and show them no mercy.

Ahh, here we have yet another way God wins: SHOW NO MERCY.

Deuteronomy 7:19
19 the great trials that your eyes saw, the signs, the wonders, the mighty hand, and the outstretched arm, by which the LORD your God brought you out. So will the LORD your God do to all the peoples of whom you are afraid.

Really? Where was this mighty hand for the people of God during WWII? Just wondering. Is that another ones of those God wins in mysterious ways things?

Deuteronomy 7:23
23 But the LORD your God will give them over to you and throw them into great confusion, until they are destroyed.

Oh look, the LORD also wins by throwing people into confusion. Remember...this is NOT their own confusion because GOD put that confusion there.

Joshua 11:8
And the LORD gave them into the hand of Israel, who struck them and chased them as far as Great Sidon and Misrephoth-maim, and eastward as far as the Valley of Mizpeh. And they struck them until he left none remaining.

You know what this is? God takes a bunch of people who are on their own property, says "Here you are!" to His own people as He orders the original inhabitants driven out and killed, then when His people kill everyone who was originally there says, "You win." Actually He really means, "I win," but you get the picture.

Joshua 11:20
20 For it was the LORD’s doing to harden their hearts that they should come against Israel in battle, in order that they should be devoted to destruction and should receive no mercy but be destroyed, just as the LORD commanded Moses.

Oh yeah, here we have verification of God purposely making people choose war in order that God win.

Judges 4:15
15 When Barak attacked, the LORD threw Sisera and all his chariots and warriors into a panic. Sisera leaped down from his chariot and escaped on foot.

God loves reusing and reusing and reusing His various tricks to win. Here? That old bugaboo PANIC.

Judges 9:23
23 And God sent an evil spirit between Abimelech and the leaders of Shechem, and the leaders of Shechem dealt treacherously with Abimelech,

Look here! God is not above using black magic to win. If you did this in modern times what would it be called, hum? Black magic. Sending an evil spirit to someone? Black magic. This is your God. This is how He wins. And this is only a FEW of the verses like this that are in the Bible.